Welcome to The Briercliffe Society Forum

The forum is free to join and you do not need to be a member of the society. You will receive an email to activate your account before you will be able to log in. Please check spam filters and junk mail folders for this email.
It is currently Thu Oct 19, 2017 2:51 am

All times are UTC [ DST ]




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 17 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next
Author Message
 Post subject: Martha Luke
PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 2:57 am 

Joined: Sun Sep 04, 2011 8:04 am
Posts: 12
Well it seems I have a mystery on both sides of my family and have hit a brick wall with both of them. George Thistlethwaite is the first and my other is Martha Luke.

Martha Luke b 1 June 1776 in or around Bristol. She was married at one stage presumably to a Mr Luke and had 2 children the eldest if which died. She started drinking after this and went a bit funny and her husband left her. Even though the husband he paid her board wouldn't let her have anything to do with the living child.

Martha was then arrested 3 times and I have copies of the transcripts from the Old Bailey. She would kidnap wealthier children and steal their clothes and then leave the children in the middle of a field.

She was sentenced to 7 years on her third trial and arrived in Sydney Australia in August 1806.

She entered into domestic service where we think she probably met James Ridley (or Rydley) and they began living together as man and wife. As Martha wasn't divorced they couldn't get married but James seems to have taken her name so that she could continue to be known as Mrs Luke.

They had 3 children and in the records they are known as "Luke or Ridley" even though any convict children were always known by their mothers names.

She fell ill about 2 years after her youngest child and died. Her gravestone is still standing in Parramatta and in really good condition - I have a photo of it.

My dilemma with her is that I cannot find any records of her before the Old Bailey records. I do not know who she was married to and I do not know her maiden name, so I am stuck with her at the end of my line. Needless to say I became a bit obsessed with this woman, and had to stop doing any sort of geneology for a while because it was really taking over lol.

So does anyone maybe have any connection to this or maybe know where I can find out more????? Very frustrating.

Tracey


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Martha Luke
PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 1:23 pm 
Computer Whizz
User avatar

Joined: Fri Mar 02, 2007 9:28 am
Posts: 3879
Location: Near Chorley
What an interesting tale, she sounds like a bit of a one as my grandma would have said.
What was the name of the first children with Mr Luke, that could give a clue to his name. Bit of a long shot but there is a marriage on familysearch 1796 Pembrokeshire, which isn't a million miles from Bristol of a Martha Hudson to a William Luke.
Gloria

_________________
Gloria

I'd be dangerous with a brain.


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Martha Luke
PostPosted: Wed Jun 20, 2012 12:26 am 

Joined: Sun Sep 04, 2011 8:04 am
Posts: 12
Hi Gloria

That's the thing, I don't know anything about any of her family in Bristol. I don't know anything about her children or husband there. The only reason I know about the husband and children is because it is mentioned in the transcripts from the Old Bailey of a woman who knew her.

Thank you so much for that long shot, I will definitely have a look. You have found more than I have in the last 2 years lol.

This is what was is one of the transcripts from the Old Bailey (her first trial):

"ELIZABETH HILLIER sworn. - I keep a mangle, No. 29, York-street, Commercial-road, Mile-end Old-town; I lived with the prisoner four years, twelve years ago, at Mr. Packer's, one of the partners in Gifford's brewhouse; she has had two children, and she and her husband have parted, but I cannot tell the reason why they parted; the first child died; she brought one child away before they parted on the Sunday, and on the Monday week he took the other away; he would not permit her to see the child, and through trouble she took to drinking, and when she had money she would get liquor, and then she does not know what she is about; she had been at Islington four months at Mrs. M'Kenzie's; her husband paid seven shillings a week to farm her there; I never knew any thing dishonest by her, I was the person that wished her to be confined."

I will definitely have a look at the lead you have given me though. THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Martha Luke
PostPosted: Wed Jun 20, 2012 1:16 am 

Joined: Sun Sep 04, 2011 8:04 am
Posts: 12
OK based on the information you have given me, I found the William Luke and Martha Hudson who married in 1796. I wasn't sure about it and then did a search for some children. Turns out they had a Margaret Luke who died at 6weeks old in October 1804 and was buried at St John's, Chester, Cheshire, England (is this close to where she may have been?).

My Martha was first tried in July 1805 - so this fits I think! I can't find another child though. I am getting a bit excited, but not counting my chickens just yet :P


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Martha Luke
PostPosted: Wed Jun 20, 2012 10:33 am 
Computer Whizz
User avatar

Joined: Fri Mar 02, 2007 9:28 am
Posts: 3879
Location: Near Chorley
Chester is north west England, I don't know why they could have been there, but then again why would she go from Bristol to Pembroke? Could they have been itinerant workers/gypsies? If you look on bingmaps you can see the distances between the three places.
What is the information you have on Martha, ie where did you get her birth as in or around Bristol? just looking for another angle.

_________________
Gloria

I'd be dangerous with a brain.


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Martha Luke
PostPosted: Thu Jun 21, 2012 12:41 am 

Joined: Sun Sep 04, 2011 8:04 am
Posts: 12
This is what we have on Martha:

B 1 June 1776 in Bristol (there are various records on Ancestry and other relatives have traced her back to the same date and place as well)
D 19 May 1815 in Parramatta NSW Australia

We think that during the Industrial Revolution in the 18th century that there was a lot of displacement caused and that they may have moved around but by the 1790's Martha was living in London.

A Mrs Hillier gave evidence at her first trial who said she lived with Martha for four years. Martha married and had 2 children one of whom died. Martha and her husband parted and he wouldn't let her see their child. She became deeply disturbed and was very unhappy.

It seems that she would steal children and take their clothes to fund her alcohol problem which she developed after the husband left.

In September 1805 she was sentenced to 7 years deportation and left England in January 1806 on the Alexander, of which we have the records for.

She entered into domestic service here where she met James Ridley after he too was sent out here for a crime. Coincidentally his birthday is the same as Martha but 18 years apart.

She then lived her life out in Australia with James, they had 3 children and were eventually given land grants and lived as free settlers.

This is really the only information that we have on her. She is a mystery that's for sure.


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Martha Luke
PostPosted: Thu Jun 21, 2012 9:30 am 
Computer Whizz
User avatar

Joined: Fri Mar 02, 2007 9:28 am
Posts: 3879
Location: Near Chorley
I must be completely missing something here, if you have her birth date and place of birth, then have you got her maiden name? I have looked at the information on ancestry and the trial makes interesting reading. I see it (the tree) gives her date of birth but refers to her all the time as Martha Luke, not sure how this is going to be solved.

_________________
Gloria

I'd be dangerous with a brain.


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Martha Luke
PostPosted: Thu Jun 21, 2012 10:25 am 

Joined: Sun Sep 04, 2011 8:04 am
Posts: 12
No we don't have her maiden name at all. We (me and others looking for her) have gotten her DOB off various documents like shipping records, death records and stuff like that. She is noted everywhere as being born on 1 June and we definitely have her DOD and I have a photo of her headstone as well. We just can't locate her before the trials.


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Martha Luke
PostPosted: Thu Jun 21, 2012 2:40 pm 
Computer Whizz
User avatar

Joined: Fri Mar 02, 2007 9:28 am
Posts: 3879
Location: Near Chorley
Isn't it frustrating when you cannot get further back, still you have got a long way. Have you seen any christening records for any of the children born in Australia, maybe her maiden name is on those, but probably it would say Luke? As there are a few of you looking into this I would have thought every avenue would have been searched.
The only thing I can find is the marriage I mentioned earlier, there could be the situation where there is no paper trail of her birth.
Sorry not to be of more help-----frustrating-----
Gloria

_________________
Gloria

I'd be dangerous with a brain.


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Martha Luke
PostPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2012 12:11 am 

Joined: Sun Sep 04, 2011 8:04 am
Posts: 12
It is really frustrating!

No there is no mention of her maiden name on the birth records and I have a copy of her death certificate (much as it is) and there is only the bare minimum details on it like Name, DOD, Burial and where she is buried.

I am hoping that it is the case that during the Industrial Revolution they moved around a lot and that the Martha we have found is her. I will do a bit more digging but that avenue is promising, especially with the child that died at 6w at the end of the year that she started going a bit mental. That is the thing that gives me some hope that it is her!

Thanks so much for your help though! It is much appreciated.


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Martha Luke
PostPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2012 8:49 am 
Computer Whizz
User avatar

Joined: Fri Mar 02, 2007 9:28 am
Posts: 3879
Location: Near Chorley
How odd that James Ridley had the same date of birth (be it 18yrs different). In those days I would think not many people would remember the exact date, and I wonder if they had to have a full date of birth to transport them and so defaulted to 1st June--- haven't heard of this but it seems logical.

_________________
Gloria

I'd be dangerous with a brain.


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Martha Luke
PostPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2012 8:56 am 

Joined: Sun Sep 04, 2011 8:04 am
Posts: 12
It's possible I suppose. I never really thought of that. I thought it was very odd though that they had the same birth date....a nice odd lol.

I am going to work more on that side of the family next week I think, will see what else if anything I can find. Then there is the other part of that family which is German.....that will bea whole other kettle of fish!


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Martha Luke
PostPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2012 1:05 pm 
Computer Whizz
User avatar

Joined: Fri Mar 02, 2007 9:28 am
Posts: 3879
Location: Near Chorley
Let me know is you find anything, I like to have a puzzle solved.

_________________
Gloria

I'd be dangerous with a brain.


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Martha Luke
PostPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2012 10:34 pm 

Joined: Thu Dec 09, 2010 9:57 pm
Posts: 104
I have been following this very interesting topic so just a few thoughts from me...

At the trial in 1805, Elizabeth Hillier of Mile End Old Town states she had lived with Martha twelve years ago for four years. So if Martha was 30 when she was convicted she would have been about 18 when living with Elizabeth, in which case she was probably unmarried at the time and by then living in London. There is a marriage of a John Luke to a Martha Hunt at St. George, Bloomsbury on 13th November, 1797 – so right area and the right time frame. I can only find one child baptised to a John and Martha Luke – Hannah Luke born 13th April, 1801 and baptised at St. Martin in the Fields – again roughly (within a mile or two) in the same area of London. Perhaps the first child died before baptism or it just isn`t online as there is a three year gap between the marriage and the baptism of Hannah. When Martha was tried it states she was living in Islington, so again this is all within the same area of London.

I can`t find anything online that states Martha was from Bristol. Both criminal registers state she was from Oxfordshire and the only mention of Bristol is what appears to be an incorrect entry on the convict register that says she was tried at Bristol not London. Do you know when Bristol first appeared as her place of birth? I can`t help wondering if it was an IGI submitted entry.

Regards,
Mo


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Martha Luke
PostPosted: Sat Jun 23, 2012 1:49 am 

Joined: Sun Sep 04, 2011 8:04 am
Posts: 12
Mo thank you so much. Not knowing the areas around there and how far things are from everywhere it is hard to get a grasp of just where places are and how plausible it is that people were where they were at any given time.

I will have aloof at this as well. I am going to do that side of the family next week and see how much more I can find.

Thanks so much everyone for your help so far. Anymore information would be appreciated :)


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 17 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next

All times are UTC [ DST ]


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
cron
Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Group